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Bring yourself back to Mexico with this easy-to-make elote seasoning. With chili, chipotle, and lime, its smoky-sweet flavors are versatile and will brighten up any dish. It uses mostly pantry ingredients, and it's ready in just 5 minutes!
We're big on homemade seasonings because, for one, they're easy and affordable to make. They also tend to be more fresh and flavorful, and they're customizable. If you don't love a spice, omit it. Prefer a sweeter blend? Add a bit more sugar.
This elote seasoning blend is the right mix of smoky and sweet, with a bit of zing. Use it to add flavor to your favorite foods; it's even great sprinkled on popcorn!
Double or triple the batch because this seasoning will keep for up to a year in a sealed jar. It also makes a wonderful gift for the foodies in your life.
Why you'll love it
We love this homemade elote seasoning, and we know you will too because:
- It's easy to make
- The flavors are fresh and bold
- It's customizable – add more or less of each spice depending on your tastes
- It stores well for up to a year
- It makes a great gift!
What is elote seasoning?
This elote seasoning recipe is inspired by Mexican street corn, a popular snack of corn slathered in mayonnaise, seasoned with spices and fresh lime, and topped with salty cojita cheese.
If you're familiar with Trader Joe's everything but the elote seasoning, this homemade blend is very similar. We capture all the flavors of elote (minus the corn) in a versatile seasoning that can be used as a rub on meats, as a seasoning for vegetables, in soups and stews, or anytime your food needs a bit of fiesta.
What you'll need
You may not even need to make a trip to the store for this recipe because it uses mostly pantry ingredients. Here's everything you'll need to make this versatile elote seasoning:
- Sweet paprika
- Smoked paprika
- Ground cumin
- Chili powder
- Chipotle powder
- Coconut sugar (or brown sugar)
- Lime zest
- Sea salt
How to make elote seasoning
It's easy to make this elote seasoning at home in just two steps:
- Simply add all the ingredients together in a bowl and mix well.
- This recipe will yield about a half cup so use it right away or let it sit uncovered on your counter for 1 day (to dry the lime zest) before storing it in a jar with a tight-fitting lid.
How long does it keep?
If you leave the zest to dry out overnight, the blend will keep in a sealed jar for up to a year.
Can I use brown sugar instead of coconut sugar?
Yes, brown sugar can be substituted for coconut sugar.
Ideas for using elote seasoning
There are endless ways to use this versatile seasoning! From rubbing it on meats and fish to adding flair to soups and stews, here are a few ways we love to use it:
- Sprinkled on our chili lime grilled corn on the cob
- Used as a seasoning in our Mexican quinoa soup or vegetarian tortilla soup
- On our best grilled chicken breast, slow roasted salmon, or chili lime shrimp
- With baked or roasted potatoes like these smoky roast potatoes, or sweet potato fries
- Tossed into freshly popped popcorn
- Sprinkled over avocado toast
- On eggs like our chorizo scrambled eggs
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 1 tablespoon chipotle powder (can substitute chili powder)
- 1 tablespoon coconut sugar (can substitute brown sugar)
- 1 tablespoon lime zest
- 1 teaspoon sea salt (optional)
- Add all of the ingredients to a small bowl and mix well.1 tablespoon smoked paprika, 1 tablespoon sweet paprika, 1 tablespoon ground cumin, 1 tablespoon chili powder, 1 tablespoon chipotle powder, 1 tablespoon coconut sugar, 1 tablespoon lime zest, 1 teaspoon sea salt
- Either use the elotes seasoning right away or let it sit uncovered on your counter for 1 day (to dry the lime zest) before storing it in a sealed jar.
We have thoroughly tested this recipe for accuracy. However, individual results may vary. See our full recipe disclosure here.